Gardens flood with sewage after blockage is caused by pair of wigs

Waste had overflowed into gardens in Bradford with residents unsure what was causing the obstruction.

Pair of wigs recovered from a sewer pipe in Bradford. (SWNS)
Pair of wigs recovered from a sewer pipe in Bradford. (SWNS)

Gardens were flooded with sewage after a blockage was caused by a pair of wigs in Bradford.

Waste had initially overflowed into gardens with residents unsure what was causing the obstruction.

But when a specialist team from Yorkshire Water arrived they discovered what the culprits were - two hair pieces.

The team eventually managed to clear the sewer pipe but it took them six tanks of water to do it.

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Yorkshire Water Logo on letterhead closeup
A specialist team from Yorkshire Water cleared the blockage. (PA)

Lee Pinder, regional operations manager at Yorkshire Water, said: “Every day our teams find blockages in our network caused by unsuitable items being discarded into the network, but wigs are a new one for us.

“Unfortunately, there’s a serious side to blockages caused by unusual items and in this case a number the blockage caused sewage to escape the network and enter the gardens of nearby properties.

“It is important people consider the impact of using toilets and drains as bins and that they don’t discard of unwanted items in the sewer."

The firm reminded customers they want the thee three Ps in their pipes – pee, poo and toilet paper – as well as wastewater from showers, baths and sinks.

Pinder added: "All other items don’t break down and will ultimately lead to blockages in the sewer or at our wastewater treatment works.”

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It comes after the government announced water companies would face legally binding targets to cut sewage discharges into the UK’s rivers.

Environment secretary Therese Coffey said the Conservative Party would introduce legislation through the Environment Act 2021 to put plans to reduce storm overflows on a “new legal footing”.

Almost a million hours worth of sewage discharges occurred across coastal constituencies last year, according to Labour analysis.

The party highlighted data from the Environment Agency (EA) which it says shows 141,777 sewage dumping events across 137 of a total of 139 coastal constituencies in England and Wales in 2022.

Labour’s analysis says that in 2022 sewage was discharged in coastal constituencies 141,777 times, or once every three minutes and 45 seconds, adding up to a combined total of 980,999 hours, equivalent to more than 111 years.

The party said its figures are based on EA data and data compiled by Top of the Poops.

This website publishes sewage discharge data broken down by categories, including constituency boundaries.